Post Afzal Guru hanging, global rights groups demand India end executions
"Questions need to be asked why the Indian government executed Afzal Guru now," New York-based Human Rights Watch's South Asia director Meenakshi Ganguly said.
"No one argues that those who engage in serious crimes shouldn't be punished, but the death penalty is brutal and irreversible, and there is no convincing evidence to suggest it serves as a deterrent," Ganguly said.
The group said it opposes the death penalty in all circumstances as an inherently irreversible, inhumane punishment.
The hanging of Guru comes just three months after India executed the lone surviving 26/11 terrorist Ajmal Kasab in a Pune jail.
"India should end this distressing use of executions as a way to satisfy some public opinion," said Ganguly.
"It should instead join the nations that have chosen to abolish capital punishment," she said.
Guru's execution makes it more urgent for India to reinstate its previous informal moratorium on executions as a step towards abolishing the death penalty, the rights group added.
Meanwhile, London-based Amnesty International has also expressed concern over Afzal's execution.
"We condemn the execution in the strongest possible terms. This very regrettably puts India in opposition to the global trend towards moving away from death penalty", said Shashikumar Velath, Programmes Director at Amnesty International India.
He alleged "serious questions have been raised about the fairness of Afzal Guru's trial. He did not receive legal representation of his